Electronic nicotine delivery systems such as electronic cigarette were introduced initially to help adults quit smoking to cut down on related health issues. Also known as e-cigarettes, they were first introduced in China in 2003 and were sold rapidly.
Though their main target was older adults who struggled with smoking, Juul e-cigarettes actually became more common in the younger population.
According to the statistics, a majority of the teenagers are able to recognize Juul e-cigarettes far more than adults. In fact, most of the older smokers are unaware of the new ‘vaping trend’ in adolescents and younger adults.
Recently, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the United States announced an upcoming ban on selling various electronic cigarettes including Juuls. The ban on sale was only to be reverted on one condition – the concerned company’s ability to advertise and sell the original target group instead of the younger populous.
What was the reason for this decision of FDA? The stats that were investigated prior to this decision showed that the use of Juul among middle and high school children went from 50% to a whopping 77% in 2017-2018.
This means that around 3.8 million users of Juuls were underage people and minors. Juul e-cigarettes are a particular area of concern because of their disadvantages. Several studies have shown using them can lead to lung damage, hypertension and delayed brain development.
If the ban is finalized, legal sale of Juul e-cigarettes anywhere in the United States will be stopped. This also includes online websites that sell electronic nicotine delivery system devices.
What Is A Juul?
Most of the people have limited information about e-cigarettes which is why the term ‘Juul’ and ‘Juuling’ are not as common. A Juul is one of the few types of electronic cigarettes which have mostly gained popularity in the past few years.
The device resembles the shape of a long, cylindrical pen. The difference between a Juul and a regular cigarette is that it does not contain tobacco. Instead, a Juul has different kinds of flavoring, a solution of nicotine, and a number of other chemicals.
When a person is juuling or vaping, he is actually inhaling the mist-turned version of the nicotine solution present inside it without the tobacco itself.
A commonly asked question here is that whether juuling is actually a safer alternative to the normal cigarettes. According to the National Cancer Institute, the chemicals present in the Juuls may be potentially harmful.
This is a big health concern especially with the rising number of users. A survey conducted by Schroeder Insitute by Truth Initiative reported that 25% of the adolescents between the ages of 15-17 and 29% of the young adults between the ages of 18-24 knew about Juul e-cigarettes.
Around 10-12% of them also used Juuls and 8-10% percent had used one in the last four weeks. The drawn conclusion was that Juuls were mostly used by young adults between the ages of 18-24. Males were more likely to vape than females.
Juuls were introduced in the market in the year 2015 with the initiative of helping people quit smoking for a better quality of life. Ironically, it is now stated that instead of providing a healthier alternative, Juuls may be worsening the health of people.
There is yet no corroboration that deems e-cigarettes as safe and researchers are not sure whether the benefits of these devices outweigh the harm. While this matter remains unresolved, there is plenty of evidence to show Juuls are not completely safe.
Technically, vaping or juuling still exposes a person to addictive substances such as nicotine. A long-term usage of Juuls is therefore not entirely safe especially for minors and younger adults.
Are Juuling and Vaping Different?
Contrary to the popular belief, a Juul is not anything different than vapes. In fact, they are actually a type of various vaping devices. The only difference between them and others in the nicotine content. An average Juul contains five-percent nicotine content.
This means that one Juul provides around two hundred puffs. This is the same amount given by a whole pack of cigarettes.
Though the Juuls do not contain the tobacco and only heated nicotine extract, they work as regular combustible products. Consequently, one may develop an addiction regardless of whether they prefer typical cigarettes or Juuls.
The main reason why Juuls and juuling have become more popular in comparison with other vaping devices is their easy accessibility. Not only are they less expensive and can be bought by teenagers but are more portable.
In consonance with the Wells Fargo Equity report, Juuls have taken over the e-cigarette market. 45.7% of the market share goes to Juul e-cigarettes. The sale has gone by a startling 600 percent since the year of their release.
The report released by the Centre For Disease Control and Prevention showed that the number of people smoking cigarettes has decreased considerably he recent years. Some argue that this may be because of the introduction of e-cigarettes but the main reason is still unknown.
In addition, the safety concern of e-cigarettes and juuling, in particular, is still a concern. While some argue they are safer, others believe there is enough evidence to believe otherwise.
Is Juuling Harmful?
Whether juuling and electronic cigarettes are safer than the usual cigarettes is a debate that has not been resolved. However, many studies have established the latter is not entirely safe either. Some of the disadvantages linked with Juuls and juuling are:
Juuls do not contain tobacco but an extracted solution of nicotine which is a well-known substance that increases blood pressure and may cause hypertension. In addition, it may serve as a factor for heart disease.
A study showed that using Juuls can cause stiffness in the aorta which is the artery responsible for supplying blood to the body. Secondly, the use of Juuls and e-cigarettes, in general, is also linked to narrowing of arteries which hinder the smooth blood flow.
Both of these are considered and linked to the early symptoms of a number of heart-related conditions including an aneurysm, stroke, and atherosclerosis.
Lung and Breathing Problems
In addition to the nicotine, the flavoring present in the Juuls can also cause health issues. They usually contain chemicals such as acetoin which can damage the lungs. They can irritate the mucous membranes, and cause respiratory infections such as bronchitis.
The report by the American Physiological Society shows that many of the substances present in electronic cigarettes have the capability of amalgamating in the lungs. This can make breathing difficult and the lungs prone to infections.
Cancer and DNA Damage
A study conducted by the Masonic Cancer Centre at the Universtiy of Minnesota on oral cells of Juul users showed that not can it modify the DNA in the cells but may also increase the chances of developing cancer.
In the study, the team of researchers examined the saliva of 15 subjects before and after vaping. The main objective was to look for the presence of any potentially harmful substances in it.
After the final examination, it was noted that chemicals such as acrolein, formaldehyde, and methylglyoxal were in the saliva after a mere 15 session of Juuls.
In comparison with non-users, the participants in the study hence showed a greater risk of having DNA alterations which may also potentially alleviate the chances of cancerous formations.